Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Parent to Parent: Backpacks
The new school year is right around the corner, which means students will be lugging backpacks to and from school. But a warning in today's Parent to Parent about overloading young kids. Here's Lynn Martinez.
WSVN -- When the school year starts, 12-year-old Kiahna Revan knows she will be loaded down with a lot of homework.
Kiahna Revan: "Folders, journals for school and science textbooks and math textbooks and reading textbooks."
And all of that loads down her backpack, putting a strain on her back.
Kiahna Revan: "It hurt in my shoulders a lot, 'cause of the weight on it. It was pushing my shoulders down."
Her dad Randy says she's been having problems since third grade.
Randy Revan, Parent: "She started complaining that she was having back and shoulder pains."
Dr. Julio Egusquiza, Palmetto General Hospital: "Hi. How you doing? Good."
Pediatricians say, they see a spike in the number of students complaining of back and shoulder pain when the school year starts.
Dr. Julio Egusquiza: "Back injuries account for about 11 percent of the medical visits related to backpack injuries."
Dr. Julio Egusquiza at Palmetto General Hospital says, the problems stem from the way students carry their backpacks.
Dr. Julio Egusquiza: "They don't balance the weight in the backpack. They strap it only on one shoulder."
To prevent injury, Dr. Egusquiza says, carry the backpack on both shoulders and be sure to use the waist strap to keep it centered. And lift the backpack with your legs. Never bend over and lift with your back.
Dr. Julio Egusquiza: "Bend over and touch your toes."
Kiahna's dad took her to see the doctor for her pain.
Dr. Julio Egusquiza: "Show me how you put this on."
She's been wearing the backpack on both shoulders but admits she hasn't been using the waist strap.
Dr. Julio Egusquiza: "That's the proper way to carry your backpack."
Kiahna promises to carry her backpack the proper way when school starts, although her dad is still skeptical.
Randy Revan: "Hopefully she sticks to that, you know. She wants to look cool. You know how kids are."
She says she will give it a shot but will also try and lighten her load a bit.
Kiahna Revan: "I'm going to try to bring less stuff, bringing one notebook to class, not bringing binders for every class."
Lynn Martinez: "Parents, if you think those rolling backpacks might be the answer, think again. Most schools have banned them because kids tend to trip over them in the hallways."
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Palmetto General Hospital
2001 West 68th Street
Hialeah, FL 33016
Tel: (305) 823-5000